Mario Merz (1925-2003), Untitled (Tortoise and Fibonacci's sequence), 1979
Merz communicates his vision through few, basic motifs: an igloo, protozoa, spiral signs, and the so-called Fibonacci numbers. All recurring motifs in Merz’s works.
The Fibonnaci numbers
The Fibonacci numbers – 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, etc. – follow organic logics. They describe the reproductive expansion of parents and the children that come after. The sequence was first created by the Italian medieval mathematician Leonardo da Pisa (c. 1175-1250), also known as Fibonacci.
Merz sees and describes our era’s worldview as expansive; as something that obeys the formula of the Fibonacci sequence, expressing how time and space expands towards infinity.
Many pictures in one
This drawing brings together many pictures in just one. In the figure of the swimming/-floating turtle, protozoa are overlaid by intellect above the world-sign of the igloo. Archaic time interferes with the future in a spiralling movement. The turtle-igloo figure appears like ”architecture built by time, architecture broken down by time”, biological-human. It has been traced in chalk on a blackboard like a transparent complex of formulae.